Studies on prevalence of pale, soft, exudative (PSE) condition in Sri Lankan poultry industry is minimal. Hence, the objective of present study was to determine the incidence of PSE chicken meat in a commercial meat processing plant and to find out its consequences on meat quality traits of roasted chicken breast.
A total of 60 breast fillets were randomly selected, evaluated based on color L* value, and placed into 1 of 2 categories; PSE (L* > 58) or normal meat (L* ≤ 58). A total of 20 breast fillets (10 PSE and 10 normal) were then analyzed for color, pH, and water holding capacity (WHC). After processing those into roasted chicken breast, cooking loss, color, pH, WHC, and texture values were evaluated. A sensory evaluation was conducted using 30 untrained panelists.
The incidence of PSE meat was 70 % in the present experiment. PSE fillets were significantly lighter and had lower pH values compared with normal fillets. Correlation between the lightness and pH was negative (P < 0.05). Although there was no significant difference in color, texture, and WHC values between the 2 groups after processing into roasted chicken breast (P > 0.05), an approximately 3 % higher cooking loss was observed in PSE group compared to its counterpart (P < 0.05). Moreover, cooking loss and lightness values showed a significant positive correlation. Nevertheless, there were no significant differences in sensory parameters between the 2 products (P > 0.05).
These results indicated that an economical loss can be expected due to the significantly higher cooking loss observed in roasted breast processed from PSE meat.